Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Budget sees social-sector boosts

Budget sees social-sector boosts

Budget sees social-sector boosts

Social services – including health and education – have received hefty boosts in next year’s draft budget, with the entire sector seeing a 15 percent increase in allocations.

According to the draft, approved by the Council of Ministers on October 15, around US$502 million has been allocated to social services, up from $435 million this year. Of this amount, $165 million has been allocated to the Ministry of Health, a 16 percent increase, whereas $218 million has been earmarked for the Education Ministry, an 11 percent increase.

The draft calls for expenditures of around US$2.34 billion, an increase of 19 percent over the $1.98 billion this year.

Defence and security spending received an 8 percent bump in the budget, rising from $273 million to $298 million, though this was well down from the 24 percent jump that took place between 2009 and 2010.

Cheam Yeap, head of the National Assembly’s Banking and Finance Committee, said next year’s budget was drawn up with a specific focus on social services, and that the draft would be handed to parliament for approval in early December.

Sam Rainsy Party spokesman Yim Sovann said the increase in planned expenditures was positive, but that tax revenue, which currently sat at around 12 percent of GDP, was among the lowest in the region. He said the low tax revenue was a result of corruption, and urged more efforts to tackle graft. ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY SEBASTIAN STRANGIO

MOST VIEWED

  • Phnom Penh authorities ban march for Human Rights Day

    Phnom Penh authorities have banned a planned march as local NGOs and workers’ unions gear up to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on Monday, with a youth group leader saying they would march nonetheless. The UN

  • US Embassy urges reconciliation

    The US has urged Cambodia to restore the independence of the media, drop charges against Kem Sokha and other political prisoners, and end the prohibition of political activity by opposition parties. However, senior government officials see the request, issued by US embassy spokesman Arend C

  • Government deports 235 Chinese scammers

    THE Immigration Department of the Ministry of Interior on Thursday deported 235 Chinese nationals, 35 of whom were female, via the Phnom Penh International Airport for their part in a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) online money extortion scam. The deportees were arrested on November 26 over the

  • EU companies voice concern over impact of possible EBA withdrawal

    European companies operating in Cambodia voiced concern over the potential repercussions of removing the Kingdom’s Everything But Arms (EBA) preferential scheme, as the EU Ambassador to Cambodia, George Edgar, led an EU-organised media trip this week. Speaking in Siem Reap province as part of